Young Adult Fiction

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Still life with Tornado

Sixteen-year-old Sarah can’t draw. This is a problem, because as long as she can remember, she has ‘done the art.’ She thinks she’s having an existential crisis. And she might be right; she does keep running into past and future versions of herself as she wanders the urban ruins of Philadelphia.

Or maybe she’s finally waking up to the tornado that is her family, the tornado that six years ago sent her once-beloved older brother flying across the country for a reason she can’t quite recall. After decades of staying together ‘for the kids’ and building a family on a foundation of lies and domestic violence, Sarah’s parents have reached the end. Now Sarah must come to grips with years spent sleepwalking in the ruins of their toxic marriage.

As Sarah herself often observes, nothing about her pain is remotely original—and yet it still hurts.Insightful, heartbreaking, and ultimately hopeful, this is a vivid portrait of abuse, survival, resurgence that will linger with readers long after the last page.

 

Audio excerpt for Still life with Tornado

 

Cat no: 4058
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Songbird

Jamila has left her friends, her school and her home in Iraq, and now she has a new home. It’s safe in Australia, but Jamila is finding it hard to settle in. She misses her best friend and worries for her dad’s safety back in Iraq. It’s hard to speak and write in English all day. And Jamila has a secret she wants to keep hidden.

When she joins the choir, Jamila begins to feel happy. Singing helps take her worries away. And singing will help her find her place in her new life, a place where she can shine.

Songbird is a tender story about belonging, about the importance of friendship and asking for help, and about the parts of our lives we keep concealed.

 

 Audio excerpt for Songbird
 
Cat no: 4061
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Someday

Every day a new body. Every day a new life. Every day a new choice.

For as long as A can remember, life has meant waking up in a different person’s body every day, forced to live as that person until the day ended. A always thought there wasn’t anyone else who had a life like this.

But A was wrong. There are others.

[click to continue…]

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Soul of the Border

Jole is fifteen the first time she accompanies her father, Augusto, as he smuggles tobacco across the Italian border into Austria. She knows the dangers of the treacherous high mountain passes – border guards, brigands, wild animals, ferocious weather – but she is proud that her father asks her. [click to continue…]

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Head of the River

Tall, gifted and the offspring of Olympians, superstar siblings Leni and Cristian Popescu are set to row Harley Grammar to victory in the Head of the River race. With six months until the big day, the twins can’t lose. Or can they? When Cristian is seduced by performance- enhancing drugs, and Leni is suffocated with self-doubt, their bright futures start to fade. [click to continue…]

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The Last Garden

The settlement of Wahrheit, founded in exile to await the return of the Messiah, has been waiting longer than expected. Pastor Helfgott has begun to feel the subtle fraying of the community’s faith.

Then Matthias Orion shoots his wife and himself, on the very day their son Benedict returns home from boarding school. [click to continue…]

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Becoming Aurora

Tonight we are wolves. Our pack moves as one, past empty shop fronts and faded billboards.

Sixteen-year-old Rory is at a crossroads in her life. While her gang plans its next move in a racially motivated turf war, Rory is sentenced to spend her summer at an aged care facility. [click to continue…]

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Losing It

In the 1980s in the Melbourne suburb of Fawkner, Josie’s father is drinking himself to an ugly and appalling death. Josie’s mother is a fac- tory machinist, bringing home piecework to keep the family afloat.

And Josie is surviving, or not – self-destructive sex, excessive alcohol, drugs, brutalised friendships.

[click to continue…]

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Between Us

Ana is an Iranian asylum seeker who is only allowed out of deten- tion to attend school. There she meets Jono, who is dealing with his own problems: his mum has walked out, his sister has gone away to uni and he’s been left alone with his Vietnamese father, Kenny.

[click to continue…]

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Wilder Country

Finn, Kas and Willow have survived the winter of storms. Severe winds and cold have kept the Wilders at bay. Now that spring has come, everything has changed. They’re being hunted again, and they won’t be safe while Ramage wants their blood.

[click to continue…]

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Marsh and Me

There’s a hill out the back of Joey’s house. Hardly anyone goes there—it’s not a beautiful place, just a covered-over old rubbish tip. But Joey likes it up there. It’s his hill—somewhere he likes to go to wonder about life. He longs to be the best at something, to be a famous astronaut, or mountain […]

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Swimming Upstream

Brisbane in the fifties. The Fingleton kids don’t have much, but Tony always knew he could be someone special. He just didn’t know how. Until his father Harold realised how fast Tony and his kid brother could swim, and starrted training them to beat the world.

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Move Over the Top with Jim

From the Gabba to the Ekka, from a day on the beach with Fred at Sufferer’s Paradise’ to a rainbow cake supper at Auntie Vera’s country police station, Hugh Lunn tells more hilarious, over-the- top stories about his now famous Annerley Junction family.

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Nona & Me

Rosie and Nona are sisters. Yapas. They are also best friends. It doesn’t matter that Rosie is white and Nona is Aboriginal: their family connections tie them together for life.

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Touch Me

For Xavier McLachlan, rugby is life, until he meets Nuala Magee. Has there ever been a girl like her? She’s feisty, she’s troubled, she’s dangerous.

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Loving Richard Feynman

Richard Feynman was a Nobel Prize-winning physicist. Catherine is a science-loving fifteen year old. Richard helped build the atom bomb. Catherine’s just trying to survive school.

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The Accident

A rainy night. A car crash. After the accident Sarah moves to a new school. A new place where no one knows what happened to her or her brother — where she doesn’t have to deal with the history that’s pulling the rest of her family apart. Will is keeping his head down at home, […]

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Over the Top with Jim

In 1950s’ Brisbane the Cold War is hot news, and so were the cakes at ‘Lunns for Buns’, Fred and Olive’s famous Annerley Junction cake shop. Enter one Jim Egoroff: Russian agent, all- round tough guy (aged 9) and the boy Hugh Lunn (also aged 9) is destined to make his ‘left-hand’ man.

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I Am David

David’s entire twelve-year life has been spent in a grisly prison camp in Eastern Europe. He knows nothing of the outside world. But when he is given the chance to escape, he seizes it. With his vengeful enemies hot on his heels, David struggles to cope in this strange new world, where his only resources […]

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The House on River Terrace

Ben Fielding is the sixteen year old son of a conservative politician. He is a dreamer and an artist whose friendship with the wild spirited atreet kid, Jess, draws him inevitably into conflict with his father.  

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